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Old 01-08-2020, 07:40 PM
 
Location: Tampa Area
192 posts, read 163,517 times
Reputation: 154

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After reading many older 2007'ish threads, I have enough knowledge to suspect
what these two cities are like and I am ready to ask a few questions.

I miss skiing, snowboarding, bike trails, outdoor ice rinks, fishing etc.
I telecommute for a large company so I have no commute to worry about.

I dismissed Spokane, Coeur d'Alene, Kalispell, and Missoula because I do not like
damp cold winters. These cities may not be as damp as Seattle but they are not
as dry as the front range cities like Denver or Fort Collins. I assume Bozeman
has a front range style low humidity type of cold. I lived in Denver 10 years
ago and their low humidity 20 degrees felt invigorating compared to Coeur d'Alene's
miserable damp cold. Denver or Fort Collins are too big now and skiing is 2+ hours away.
Bend and Bozeman seem to offer all the outdoor sports I miss doing.

My questions:

- Do Bend and Bozeman both have low humidity cold winters like Denver?
(I know Denver winters are not as cold, I am referring to the dryness of the cold air)

- Which one has a drier cold during winter?

- I know there are summer wildfires so are they equally as bad in both cities? How bad is it?

- Which ones has the better overall air quality? (For instance Fort Collins has way better air than Denver)

- Bend seems to have a both milder winter and milder summer than Bozeman. How is this possible?

- Threads mention Bend is very dusty. Does Bozeman have this issue also?

- Threads say Bend summers have become 10 degrees hotter due to climate change.
Is Bozeman also seeing much hotter summer temperatures?

- Same traffic in both cities or is one much worse ?

- Looks like Bozeman has better skiing with drier snow and more sun during the winter?


Basically I want to find the best mix of dry cold, mild summer temps, best air quality, least dust,
least traffic, least biting bugs so I can be laid back and just enjoy my sports when I am not working.
It seems like both places have specific advantages over the other. Any other pros and cons would
be appreciated!

Thanks for your advice..

Last edited by GulfCoastGuy; 01-08-2020 at 08:08 PM..
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Old 01-10-2020, 09:44 PM
 
5,894 posts, read 5,474,912 times
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They are more similar than different. Biggest difference is the presence of MSU in Bozeman and that lowers the average age. Bend is getting more higher ed but it will take time to build out.

Bozeman gets more rain /snow; but when it is not doing that, it might be lower humidity on average. Humidity data is varied- high, low, average, by month. I can't quickly tell for sure. Probably not a huge felt difference. Move 10 miles closer or further from mountains and there will probably be some difference in either area.

"Bend seems to have a both milder winter and milder summer than Bozeman. How is this possible?" Closer to the temperature moderating ocean.

The EPA says the air quality is better in Bozeman.

Bozeman is windy. Dusty? Maybe at times but not regularly I don't think.

Bozeman probably has a bit more winter sun (when not snowing), but not a huge difference. Better skiing? Maybe, though Mt. Batchelor is probably the bigger resort.

Bend metro is 50% bigger in population than Bozeman metro right now. And denser. And growing faster.

Last edited by NW Crow; 01-10-2020 at 10:05 PM..
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Old 01-11-2020, 09:25 PM
 
Location: Tampa Area
192 posts, read 163,517 times
Reputation: 154
Thanks NW Crow!

I didn't think anyone was going to reply.. These 2 cities seem to be the
top destinations for people who want to ski, snowboard, fish, bike, raft,
and generally lose yourself in nature. All the previous top cities like
Seattle, Portland, Denver, Fort Collins, etc are so crowded now with
impossible traffic, COL, housing shortages, and air pollution that they
are no longer desirable if not completely unaffordable.

Now Bend and Bozeman housing is almost out of reach for most people.
With a budget of 500k I'll probably need to settle for a condo or just rent.
You think housing will crash again like it did in 2007? I just can't imagine
how it can sustain these prices.

Bend and Bozeman is a tough call for me. I imagine Bend has worse traffic
but milder temps. Big Sky has better powder than Bachelor which is known
for having cascade cement half the time. Bend has big rivers and lakes.
Bozeman is probably more laid back due to Bend having 60% California influx.
So hard to tell which is the better deal but I learn more about these 2 cities everyday.
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Old 01-12-2020, 11:02 AM
 
5,894 posts, read 5,474,912 times
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This is a pretty slow forum.

If you visited each for 5-7 days I'd think you'd be able to decide.

Getting it down to 2 places is pretty good. If you picked one and weren't satisfied, plan B would be easy (especially if you rented for 6-12 months first).

Folks of Bend forum complain about parking & crowds on most popular hiking trails. There are some trails near Bozeman like that too. Probably more ways to get away though and still be in prime alpine country.

Bend has advantage if you like desert, ocean or nearby bigger cities.
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Old 01-12-2020, 08:42 PM
 
Location: Tampa Area
192 posts, read 163,517 times
Reputation: 154
I am definitely going to rent for a year to see how it goes.
That will also allow me to fly over to visit the other city from time to time.

Redmond OR (next to Bend) has flights to Bozeman for $190 round-trip.
I assume Bozeman to Redmond round-trip is a similar price.

Do you have any feelings on if Bozeman might be in a housing bubble that may retract ?
The current house prices seem very high considering the 2019 Bozeman Median household income is $44,455
The 2019 median single-family home sale prices is $460,000. More than 10x income!
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Old 01-13-2020, 03:21 PM
 
5,894 posts, read 5,474,912 times
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Bozeman has lots of students and recently students that pull median "household"income way down.

The median "family" income there is $78,000.

Yes the housing price to income ratio is high in Bozeman. And Bend. Among the highest in the West outside of CA, a few big cities and wealthy suburbs and more exclusive resort areas.

I don't predict housing bubbles with specificity & confidence other than to say that I assume there probably will be another at some point. Probably not in next year, but could be 2, 3, 5 years away.

Last edited by NW Crow; 01-13-2020 at 03:57 PM..
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Old 01-13-2020, 05:32 PM
 
5,894 posts, read 5,474,912 times
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Should have said bubble... burst or deflation in above.
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Old 01-22-2020, 12:42 PM
 
1,178 posts, read 1,969,236 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GulfCoastGuy View Post
.

I dismissed Spokane, Coeur d'Alene, Kalispell, and Missoula because I do not like
damp cold winters.

Missoula, and pretty much all of western Montana east of the pass, also doesn't have the wet winters that you'd see in CdA/Spokane. Missoula gets about half the amount of snowfall that Spokane/CdA do. The Pacific current that sweeps north there stops at the Silver Valley and doesn't make it over the range, which seems to hold in the warmer, but damper air. Missoula always seemed like a micro Denver to me.
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Old 01-23-2020, 11:49 AM
 
Location: Washington State
344 posts, read 236,426 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dangerous Dave View Post
Missoula, and pretty much all of western Montana east of the pass, also doesn't have the wet winters that you'd see in CdA/Spokane. Missoula gets about half the amount of snowfall that Spokane/CdA do. The Pacific current that sweeps north there stops at the Silver Valley and doesn't make it over the range, which seems to hold in the warmer, but damper air. Missoula always seemed like a micro Denver to me.
Interesting, I lived in Missoula for about seven years from 2006 thru 2013 and remember winters being pretty grey drizzly and depressing.

I don't know that I'd compare it to Denver, my mind always went to Salt Lake City. A little colder and gloomier on the average, and oh that inversion every year. the the five valleys is a bowl filled with terrible air quality for far too much time.
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Old 01-29-2020, 08:53 PM
 
96 posts, read 268,268 times
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Lived in both bend and bozeman.
Both great.. can't go wrong.
Bend much milder winter temps. Found the evenings felt cooler pretty quick in afternoon, than Bozeman in the summer
But Bozeman better snow conditions and downhill skiing.
Bend trails are dustier due to volcanic soils.
Both have lots of sunshine and aur quality seemed good in both.
Bend variety for small lakes and a more scenic town due to river running right thru it.
Bend golf courses and cool small restaurants.
Bozeman has access to Yellowstone ! ! and MSU.
Both suffering growing pains.
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